Solar Panel Cost Guide in Carmel By The Sea, CA (Jan 2023)

  • Carmel By The Sea Solar Installation Cost: $5,542
  • 25-Year Savings: $20,789
  • Payback Period: 5.3 Years

See cost of a solar system near you:

By EcoWatch Local Advisors

Data Analysis: James Savino

Ranking Methodology: Karsten Neumeister

Updated January 20, 2023

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We work with a panel of solar experts to create unbiased reviews that empower you to make the right choice for your home. No other site has covered renewables as long as us, which means we have more data and insider information than other sites. Our rankings are never affected by revenue or partnerships.

Average Cost of Solar Panels in Carmel By The Sea

Find out how much it might cost to go solar in Carmel By The Sea.

In Carmel By The Sea, solar panels cost about $3 per watt on average. To cover the typical energy usage of the average home in Carmel By The Sea, most homeowners require a 2.9-kilowatt system. Using the per-watt figure above, a solar installation costs around $5,542, or $4,101 after the federal solar tax credit of 30% is applied.

These figures are only estimates, and your own solar costs may look different based on factors unique to your home and what company you want to go with. With average savings of about $34,000 on electricity bills over 20 years, many homeowners in Carmel By The Sea find installing solar panels can pay off big.

For a free quote from a local solar company that has been pre-vetted by the EcoWatch team, click the button below.

Solar savings over time in Carmel By The Sea

Year Return on Investment
1 years $-4,489
3 years $-2,382
5 years $-276
7 years $1,831
9 years $3,937
11 years $6,044
13 years $8,150
15 years $10,257
17 years $12,363
19 years $14,470
21 years $16,576
23 years $18,683
25 years $20,789

Top Solar Installers in Carmel By The Sea

Trying to put up solar panels by yourself can be a difficult undertaking, which is why getting a solar installer is a good option for many homeowners. Also, companies with a high reputation that are more expensive upfront could actually save you money in the long run with their warranties, repair services and expert design.

Working with a vetted solar company can make going solar easier. Here are our recommendations:

Best National Provider

SunPower

★★★★★
5.0

  • Most efficient panels on the market
  • National coverage
  • Cradle to Cradle sustainability certification
  • Great warranty coverage
  • Expensive
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

Best Regional Coverage

Momentum Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Great warranty coverage
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • Concierge service ensures steady communication
  • Slightly limited service offerings

Best Technology

Tesla Energy

★★★★★
4.5

  • Price-match guarantee
  • Sleek, efficient, and durable solar panels
  • Best solar battery on the market
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

See all of the solar companies in Carmel By The Sea

Factors that Affect Solar Panel Costs in Carmel By The Sea

Even though the average cost of a solar system in Carmel By The Sea is $5,542, your actual cost may differ. There are several factors that can have a sizable impact on the cost of a solar panel installation. Below are some of the more important things to consider.

Solar Equipment

The size of the solar panel system you need to offset your energy usage, which is measured in kilowatts, is the most important cost factor to consider. For every additional kilowatt you need, your total will most likely increase by around $2,730. The kind of solar equipment you choose can increase or decrease your cost by thousands or even tens of thousands of dollars. If you opt for the most efficient solar panel brands, you'll end up paying more upfront than if you opted for the most affordable panels. However, more efficient panels could save you more in the long run on your electric bills. In addition, extra products, like solar batteries, can bump up your total well above the Carmel By The Sea average.

Solar Financing Terms

Many homeowners find the average cost of solar in Carmel By The Sea to be too expensive, even if the investment pays off over time. Fortunately, nearly every solar installer in the area offers financing options. Solar loans drastically decrease upfront costs in most cases, but they also result in higher prices over time due to interest. You'll have to consider the long-term cost of financing options, including the amount of interest you'll pay over the length of the loan. If you're only able to get a high-interest loan, then your total can be hundreds or even thousands of dollars more than the principal cost. Making a larger down payment or getting a solar loan with a low APR could reduce your costs significantly.

Solar Panel Installation Company

The final significant cost factor you should keep in mind is the installer you choose. Given the massive popularity of sustainable energy solutions in Carmel By The Sea, you'll have lots of options to choose from, but each comes at various price points for labor and equipment. The size of the company can sometimes play the most considerable role in your total costs. Larger national companies, like SunPro and Sunrun, often have lower pricing because of greater resources and better pricing. Smaller local companies might be more costly, but they generally have better customer service and more customization options, and the occasional sale or promotion can bring their pricing lower to compete with bigger names.

Solar Panel Cost Data by System Size

System size Cost per system watt Solar system cost 25-Year savings Payback period
6 kW $2.84 $11,925 $42,509 5.5 years
8 kW $2.78 $15,594 $56,984 5.4 years
10 kW $2.73 $19,110 $71,612 5.3 years
12 kW $2.68 $22,473 $86,394 5.2 years
14 kW $2.62 $25,684 $101,328 5.1 years
16 kW $2.57 $28,741 $116,414 5.0 years
18 kW $2.51 $31,646 $131,654 4.8 years
20 kW $2.46 $34,398 $147,047 4.7 years

How to Save on Solar Panels

The company that does your solar panel installation will affect the warranties and brands available to you, and it will also have an impact on your total cost. Since choosing a company can be a tough decision, we have some tips to help you, such as:

  • Contract: It's important to read your solar installer's contract fully to understand what services they will provide, what the warranty covers and what expectations you should have about your solar system's energy production.
  • Installation Process: Make sure you're on the same page with the company regarding how the installation process will go and what needs to be done before your solar panels are installed, such as updating your electrical system or roof.
  • Solar Panel Brands: The type of solar panel you'd like to get plays a role in which installer you should opt for, since different companies have access to different panels.
  • Reputation: The North American Board of Certified Energy Practitioners (NABCEP) is a respected certification organization for renewable energy professionals. If your solar panel installer is NABCEP-certified, it most likely has a good reputation and is qualified to get the job done well. Another way you can verify your installer's reputation is by reading reviews.

Best National Provider

SunPower

★★★★★
5.0

  • Most efficient panels on the market
  • National coverage
  • Cradle to Cradle sustainability certification
  • Great warranty coverage
  • Expensive
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

Best Regional Coverage

Momentum Solar

★★★★★
4.5

  • Great warranty coverage
  • Representatives are experts on local policies
  • Concierge service ensures steady communication
  • Slightly limited service offerings

Best Technology

Tesla Energy

★★★★★
4.5

  • Price-match guarantee
  • Sleek, efficient, and durable solar panels
  • Best solar battery on the market
  • Some reported issues with customer service
  • Customer service varies by local dealer

EcoWatch's Carmel By The Sea, CA Solar Cost FAQs

How much does it cost to install solar panels in Carmel By The Sea?

The average cost of solar panels in Carmel By The Sea is about $13,650 for a 5-kW system and $27,300 for a 10-kW system before the ITC, but the real cost will depend on things like the model of solar panels you want, what size system you need and how much energy you use.

What other factors should I consider in addition to cost when buying solar panels?

The upfront cost is a key factor to consider, but whether it's the most important for you depends on your reasons for going solar. In cities where rooftop space is limited, efficiency can trump the cost. Other factors that are important to take into account are the quality and durability of your solar panels.

How much can I save on electricity bills after switching to solar?

It is possible to eradicate your electricity bills with solar panels, but for most homeowners throughout Carmel By The Sea, that will require at least a 10-kW system. Not all homes can accommodate that size system, so you'll want to check with a local solar installer to see how many panels can fit on your roof.

How often do you have to replace solar panels?

On average, the lifespan of solar panels is about 25 to 30 years. Some even last up to 50 years, but their efficiency goes down by about 0.8% each year. You can choose to replace them sooner if you want to maintain a higher amount of energy production.

Our goal is to reach as many people as we can with sensible solutions like solar energy. Our team of full-time local researchers collects solar price and installation data for every city in America then compiles it to create these digestible city guides. If you want to read our solar expert's opinion on the top solar companies featured here, follow this link.

Company research was conducted by Melissa Smith and Karsten Neumeister. Local data analysis was conducted by James Savino. See something we missed or could do better? Email the editor.

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